Meet the Match

A Russian Empowers a New Generation through Field Hockey

Lyubov is deputy director and non-commercial partnership manager for S.K. Dinamo, Russia’s most prestigious and historically successful field hockey club. She seeks to empower a new generation of strong, young Russian women through field hockey.

Raised in Yekaterinburg, Lyubov was exposed to alpine skiing as a 2-year-old girl and often skied with her father, who was one of the leaders in developing the sport in Russia. An athlete from her youth, she was introduced to field hockey after university and has worked to develop the sport since 2004, when she joined S.K. Dinamo. In her role, Lyubov takes lead on organizing domestic and international sports events, including the EuroHockey Indoor Club Tournament, and collaborates closely with the Russian Hockey Federation and International Hockey Federation on logistics, administrative support, and media for the club. She also organizes annual diplomacy-themed sports festivals with international partners such as India and Japan.

While S.K. Dinamo currently boasts 50 professional players, 600 players in its training school, and works closely with a nearby Olympic Reserve School to train 100 adolescent and teenage girls, there are still challenges facing the growth of field hockey nationwide. The sport is professional, though there are only six teams in the country’s Super League with vast distances to cover for games. There is also a lack of adequate facilities, and a need for increased sponsorship to sustain the sport.

By participating in the GSMP, Lyubov has learned professional skills—fundraising, sponsorship, and sports promotion—to contribute to the professional development of field hockey, as well as to show the ways the sport contributes to healthy lifestyles and personal growth for women.

Lyubov earned a higher degree in Oligophrenic pedagogy and speech therapy from Ural State Pedagogical University.  Outside of field hockey, she organizes music festivals, such as Ural Music Night, Russia’s largest annual music festival with an audience of more than 250,000 people.

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